Case Studies in Urban Sustainability: Los Angeles and New York City
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines sustainability as the notion to “create and maintain the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony to support present a..
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines sustainability as the notion to “create and maintain the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony to support present and future generations” (US EPA, “Learn About Sustainability.”). It is no secret that the United States tends to fall behind when it comes to sustainability, let alone urban sustainability. When there is talk of environmentally sustainable cities, smaller cities like Copenhagen, Amsterdam, and Cape Town are usually the topic of conversation. It is time we take a closer look at larger cities, with arguably the largest environmental problems, and see what we can improve upon. If we can identify the greatest urban environmental challenges in our most highly populated cities, then we can more easily start to understand what solutions might work best at solving our problems. This project looks at Los Angeles and New York City, the two most highly populated cities in the United States. In the analysis of each city, key environmental issues, current sustainable design features, and the plans in place to become more sustainable are identified. From here we can measure our progress, and determine if we are being progressive enough in light of climate change threats. Research in this area can help us figure out the most effective ways to design and change our cities moving forward.